Announcing a step forward towards protection of cows in Madhya Pradesh, Chief Minister Kamal Nath has asked officials to make a detailed action plan for preventing cow-related road accidents and keeping them away from the roads.
The Congress had promised a cow protection plan in its elections manifesto. The Chief Minister said he has instructed officials to make an action plan in the gram panchayat level to prevent cow-related accidents, particularly during monsoon.
"Over the years it is being seen that owing to wet open fields and pastures and plentiful rainwater in agricultural fields during monsoon months, cows enter the roads and highways, often causing accidents, which lead to bovine as well as human casualties. An action plan needs to be drawn up to village panchayat level to ensure that cows don't enter roads and highways," Kamal Nath said on Wednesday.
Data with the state police say they received on an average eight phone calls daily about cow-related accidents in the last three years.
The data generated by the "Dial 100 Emergency Response Service" of the Madhya Pradesh Police show that in the last 40 months, it received 9,317 calls from people about cow-related road accidents across the state.
The daily frequency of such calls in the monsoon months was much higher, including 16 calls daily in 2016, 13 in 2017 and 14 in 2018. In July 2019, "Dial 100" received nine such calls daily.
During the three monsoon months of July, August and September, a total 1,489 calls were received in the monsoon months in 2016, 1,232 calls in 2017, 1,256 in 2018 and 284 calls in July this year.
Kamal Nath, after taking power, had said he wanted to see cows in shelters and not on the streets. Recently, the state government had announced to build 100 cow shelters with the help of private companies. The government also allocated Rs 132 crore in the state budget for cow protection programmes.